When Princess Diana married into the British royal family in 1981, she had no idea what she was getting herself into. A naive young woman from an aristocratic family, she assumed that she would be stepping into a fairytale life with the man of her dreams. What actually happened was not at all what the princess expected.
Instead of wedded bliss, Princess Diana married Prince Charles, a man she barely knew who was also in love with someone else. Since the two were so different and they had a sizable age gap, they never quite meshed. Instead, the princess felt ignored and the prince began an affair with his ex-girlfriend, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall.
As a member of the royal family, Princess Diana did not expect to be thrust onto the global stage. She was also isolated from her own family, which made her existence in the royal family seem lonelier. In fact, by the time she and Prince Charles separated in 1992, and eventually divorced, she thought no one would want to date her.
Princess Diana and Prince Charles’ marriage was extremely difficult
By the time Princess Diana and Prince Charles got engaged in 1981, they had only seen each other 13 times in person. The prince was looking to make his family happy and the princess just had no clue what she would be getting into.
“[Princess Diana] was just bitterly unhappy, she was disappointed in her marriage as was Charles it was a car crash from the very beginning,” royal biographer Penny Junor explained in the documentary, Princess Diana’s Evil Stepmother. “When Charles and Diana got together it seemed on paper that this was the most perfect match, but Diana’s childhood had been very difficult and the happy jolly-go-lucky venire that she presented to the world was nothing more than a venire. Charles was a very complex character and the two of them was about the worst match you could possibly have made.”
There were already cracks in the marriage by the time the pair were on their first royal tour overseas.
Princess Diana wanted a life away from the spotlight after her divorce
Princess Diana realized her marriage was over by the time Prince Harry was born in 1984. However, divorce at the time was unthinkable. By the time she and Prince Charles separated, following the public revelation of his affair with Camilla, the princess was seeking a quiet life.
“Over the next few months, I will be seeking a more suitable way of combining a meaningful public role with, hopefully, a more private life,” she said in 1993 at a benefit lunch for the Headway National Injuries Association.
When the divorce was finalized, the princess dumped her security detail as well, deciding to use police protection only when she was attending pubic events.
Princess Diana was afraid no one would date her following her divorce
After 15 years in the spotlight, Princess. Diana knew her life had become a spectacle. She was afraid she would never find true love as a result. In the Channel 5’s Diana in her Own Words, former BBC royal correspondent Jennie Bond revealed that she expressed her excitement for the princess following her divorce.
“I said to her ‘Diana, you are going to have men beating a path to your door,'” she explained. “And she said ‘I won’t, I won’t, who would take me with all the baggage I come with?’”
The princess went on to controversially date Dr. Hasnat Khan from 1995 to 1997. She was dating Dodi Fayed when they were both tragically killed in a car crash in Paris in August 1997.